New Faction(s). Need Help

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theDream
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Joined: October 30th, 2010, 9:08 pm

New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by theDream »

I'm trying to create new factions to eventually form an era. But right now, I have no programming knowledge whatsoever. I was wondering if anybody could help me with that.
I've started to make animations and hopefully they'll be better. Any help in this category is appreciated as well.
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Here's one of the factions I have planned

Badland Tribes

Warrior
14gold 33hp 5 moves neutral
Spear 10-2 pierce melee
Torch 5-3 fire melee pillage: if this attack kills an enemy unit on a village or castle, the enemy loses 1 gold to you

Hunter
15gold 31hp 6 moves neutral
Knife 5-2 blade melee
Bow 8-2 pierce ranged accurate: this attack has an extra 10% chance to hit.

Shaman
19gold 28hp 5 moves neutral
heal +4
Staff 4-2 impact melee
Banish 9-2 arcane ranged magical

Seer
18gold 20hp 5 moves neutral
Farsight: this unit's scouting range is treated as 4 moves greater than its actual value.
Vision 0-1 arcane ranged always hits; no retaliation; neutralize: the target unit cannot attack on its turn. It can still move normally.

Tamer
15gold 30hp 6 moves neutral
whip 7-2 impact melee
tranquilizing darts 4-2 pierce ranged tranquilize: if a living unit hit by this attack end up with less than 9hp, it will not be able to act on its next turn or retaliate.

Tiger
19gold 41hp 7 moves neutral
beast: If there is no tamer at the beginning of this unit's turn within 4 hexes of it, this unit will attack the nearest unit.
twilight hunter: this unit receives +25% attack during dawn and dusk and -25% attack during day.
Claws 8-3 blade melee feed: this unit gains 5hp upon killing a living unit

Gorilla
16gold 40hp 5 moves neutral
beast
territorial: this unit receives +20% attack when defending and attacking with full movement. Its attack is decreased by 20% when it has 1 or no movements.
Smash 11-2 impact melee

Cobra
15gold 24hp 6 moves chaotic
beast
bite 6-2 pierce firststrike; poison

Velensk
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Velensk »

I'm going to tell you what everyone else gets told, if you want something done it is generally best to do it yourself.

Making factions is one of the easier tasks in WML, download some era/faction (if you haven't already) find where it is on your computer and take a look at it. Much of it is self explanatory. If you still have any questions, ask in the WML workshop.

Some of the abilities you are thinking about are tricky but all of them are workable (with the possible exception of the beast ability).

As for the faction design, I cannot say that the ideas here thrill me. It looks to me like a lot of this 'this seems like it would be cool' over practicality or cohesiveness. A couple notes:
-You have not said much anything about the movetype (how well they defend/move through which terrains) something that should be noted.
-This faction lacks and 8 mp scout. For mainline maps it is critical for village grabbing and related dynamics that every faction have a unit with 8 mp. It is essentially impossible to hit a balance with the abuse that can come from lack of one in a number of situations.
-This faction lacks a water unit/flier. I'd consider this to be a lesser concern however on some maps it could be a problem. I would recommend that your water unit not be some animal that requires a tamer nearby due to the logistical concerns of requiring a tamer to follow them into/through the water to be used.
-Hunter is rather good for its cost (not inherently a problem) but you might want to consider decreasing its melee damage or something.
-Farsight is an ability that makes it even harder to hide things in the fog. I generally find that to make things less interesting. Also, an ability that automatically hits/disables a units attack is a very tactically significant ability. I think there is a certain amount of prudence to mainlines policy of linking status effect attacks to a chance to fail (i.e. the attack misses). The easiest way to make it so that there is no retaliation is to make a unique range for it. I think that it would be more in step with mainline (don't know if this is desirable to you or not) if you do give it a chance to miss (though if you do this, I'd definitely suggest decreasing the price of the unit).
-Tamer/Beasts(in general), this has the potential to be interesting but it also is a very limiting factor. I can tell from the way you have it set up that the beasts are going to be an essential part of the faction and requiring the use of a tamer/including the vulnerability to tamer sniping could be something frustrating to deal with. It could also be a balance problem when fighting enemies with skirmish/other sniping abilities vs those without. I am not certain that it will be beneficial in the long run so test/tread carefully. (also, beast is going to be a pain to implement)
-Choices of beasts: When I think badlands I think areas like the foot hills on the east side of the rockies. Baren, frequently dry, sparse vegetation if any. Gorillas and Tigers are both jungle dwellers (though there are some species of tiger that prefer open areas they still like areas with easily accessible water) and I would think that you would not find many in the biome that 'badlands' implies to me. I know less about cobras so I won't say anything about them.
-Tiger: You don't want an ability that modifies damage like that, what you probably want is a custom alignment (I think that as of 1.9 there is actually a mainline alignment that gets bonuses at dawn/dusk though I don't remember much else about it). An ability called feeding already exists, it gives a permanent +1 to hp per kill. As it currently stands the tiger (Assuming it has a decent movetype) is very strong for its cost especially if you include your version of the feeding ability. Very mobile and hard hitting. It would be somewhat limited by needing to stay close to a tamer but I'd still advise that it is cheap for the power and durability it provides.
-Gorilla: The problem with this ability is ZoC. Except when fighting level 0s a non-skirmishing unit attacking an enemy will always be at full mp(they started next to them) or no mp(they moved next it it and lost all of it to ZoC). you might as well just decrease the damage by 20% and give them a 50% bonus to damage while they have all their mp and come out of it with a simpler ability and roughly the same effect. I don't think that the description justifies the effect though. This ability can be used in an offensive slug out almost as easily as a defensive. If you want to represent their territorial tendencies I'd think that terrain defense would be a better way to do so.
-Cobra: I find it a bit strange that the cobra has first-strike when the spearbearing warrior does not. Cobras are fast and have decent range but they don't outrange a spear. (of course this could be a simple oversight from your description).
"There are two kinds of old men in the world. The kind who didn't go to war and who say that they should have lived fast died young and left a handsome corpse and the old men who did go to war and who say that there is no such thing as a handsome corpse."

theDream
Posts: 12
Joined: October 30th, 2010, 9:08 pm

Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by theDream »

I probably should add a village grabbing unit. Forgot about that.
As for the beast ability, are you sure it can't be done? I purposely wanted to make that ability a liability for using units that are otherwise very strong. My other option would be to decrease the animals' attack and add a leadership-like ability to the tamer.

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Elvish_Hunter
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Elvish_Hunter »

Velensk wrote:(I think that as of 1.9 there is actually a mainline alignment that gets bonuses at dawn/dusk though I don't remember much else about it).
Yes, it's called "liminal", and it was originally intended for the new Quenoth Elves in UtBS. Liminal units receive +25% at dawn/dusk and -25% at day/night (if my memory doesn't fool me).
Current maintainer of these add-ons:
1.14: The Sojournings of Grog, A Rough Life, The White Troll (co-author), Wesnoth Lua Pack
1.12: Children of Dragons

Velensk
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Velensk »

The problem with the beast ability is that it removes control of the unit from the player and has the possibility of allowing the unit to attack an ally. This would be very hard to do without giving the unit to an AI side. There is no way to tell the game to take control of one unit and what you are asking has a bit too many potential complications to fake. The problem is that when your era is loaded up into a scenario the scenario probably won't have some neutral AI side for you to have the beast ability to give it to. Also, even if you make it so that the ability creates a side (and I'm not sure that it can) there is a problem with timeing. Presumably, you want it so that the beasts without tamers move before everyone else does. In a 2 player match, this would be fine for player 1 because you could just make it so that side 3 is the neutral side but what if you want it to be side 2? You cannot give the beasts to side 1 because that side is already controlled by another player and doing so will make it so that they never attack the enemy even if the enemy is the obvious choice. An alternate method which is more plausable might be to give control of the player with the beasts side to the AI, transfering all non-beast/controlled beast units to some other side (but again you need another side) then somehow determineing when the AI thinks it is finished with its turn (not sure how this wold be done) and transfering all the other units back and giving control of the side back to the human player.

In any case, even if you can get around the fundimental problems there will still be a ton of somewhat finicky work.

EDIT: I think I actually like his idea for a custom allignment better. Seems silly giving bonus's when no time of day is neutral.
"There are two kinds of old men in the world. The kind who didn't go to war and who say that they should have lived fast died young and left a handsome corpse and the old men who did go to war and who say that there is no such thing as a handsome corpse."

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Alarantalara
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Alarantalara »

Elvish_Hunter wrote:Liminal units receive +25% at dawn/dusk and -25% at day/night (if my memory doesn't fool me).
Your memory does. Liminal units receive no bonus or penalty at all under the default schedules. They can be given one with a custom schedule however. For instance, an era with this faction could define its own schedule and call replace_schedule at the start of the game to add in exactly the bonus it wants for each time of day. To match the random start times for some maps, it would have to do a replace based on the schedule the map has on turn 1.

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Elvish_Hunter
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Elvish_Hunter »

Alarantalara wrote:Your memory does.
Ok. :oops: I just checked the in-game help, and it says (at Gameplay - Time of Day):
"Liminal units get +25% damage during twilight."
Considering that, for now, no ToD has the liminal_bonus key (and as such liminal units are currently like neutral units), does the in-game help or the ToD macros need correction?
Current maintainer of these add-ons:
1.14: The Sojournings of Grog, A Rough Life, The White Troll (co-author), Wesnoth Lua Pack
1.12: Children of Dragons

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Alarantalara
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Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by Alarantalara »

One of them certainly needs correction. I believe the in-game help represents the desired behaviour, so i suppose it's the ToD macros that need the change. I like the twilight hunter definition here though, it makes me want to be able to define my own alignments (it's easy to imagine a converse of the twilight hunter, where the penalty is a night instead of day, for instance, or an "early riser" for benefits in second watch/dawn/morning and penalties for other times). Perhaps I'll suggest it as an idea, though I'll need to think about it some more first.

MrSean
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Joined: December 4th, 2010, 2:43 am

Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by MrSean »

Criticisms are basically what Velensk said.
interesting looking faction, to me. I like the mental imagery it conjures (dry, cracked vistas, towering rock formations), but with the beasts, there are some problems (as has been stated earlier).
Tigers are not really native to badlands. You might want to replace them with mountain lions, which I think are more likely to wander around in such places, and while smaller physically could work for your purposes. Alternatively, real lions live in savannas, and so could perhaps work for you if you want to change the unit from tiger. In terms of battlefield uses, the tiger/mountain lion/lion unit could be made the scout instead of the whirlwind of claws and death by bumping mp up by 1 and reducing hp/damage, but that brings up even more problems with the 'beast' mechanic. Giving the faction a horse-mounted unit for scouting would be easier, but maybe not what you want.
Instead of attacking the nearest unit if the 'beast' requirements are not met, is it possible to code it just so that the animal attacks a random unit adjacent to it (if there is one), but cannot move? Or would that still require the unit to move to AI control?
The 'farsight' ability, while cool, gives wayyy to much sight distance. It would be better, I think, if you reduced the amount to 2x movement points and/or reduced the speed of the seer (but the latter option would not be enjoyable, in my opinion.) Also, how does a vision prevent somebody from attacking? Make them see their own horrible, messy demise if they do? You could maybe balance it by giving the attack 'magical' instead of 'always hits'; this way it wouldn't be able to totally screw over your opponents best damage dealer every turn.
A rattlesnake might work in place of the cobra, if you want to be accurate with a more badland biome rather than jungle biome. I don't really know of anything that would take the place of a gorilla, though... most plains animals are too different to match it.
Could you tell us a little bit more about the faction than just some unit statistics? Who are they? What do they do? The 'pillage' ability says two things: they like to raid, and there are people that they can raid. (or do they just like raiding other tribes of their own culture?) None of their units are mounted, which implies a lack of horses and mobility, so if you were going for a 'Plains Indians around 1870's America attacking pioneers/settlers' feel than you aren't making it. However, as I said above the faction does have an interesting feel to it already. Perhaps you could switch their area of operation/biome from badland to jungle, to mesh the beast units together? Or would that clash too violently with the story you doubtlessly have already come up with?
I'm not sure if this came up for anybody else, but the images didn't show up on my computer. You might want to check in on that.

theDream
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Joined: October 30th, 2010, 9:08 pm

Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by theDream »

Personally, I don't think the seer's farsight is too much. Consider scouts with 8mp. They can move 4 grids on their turn and return to their starting position, giving them a sight range of 12. The seers don't have much movement point, so they can't do that. I know the vision ability can look devastating, which is why I set the seer to 20hp (easy to kill) and allow the target to move. As for the logical aspect of vision, it's the seer predicting every move the unit will make, so all her allies can easily avoid the enemy.

Here's a link to the images I made for the tiger's attack animation (they're not in order). Hopefully it works this time.
http://s1090.photobucket.com/albums/i372/theDream4/

MrSean
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Joined: December 4th, 2010, 2:43 am

Re: New Faction(s). Need Help

Post by MrSean »

Ah. I thought it said that the scouting range was treated as 4 TIMES more than normal, not 4 MORE than normal. This is much better. You can understand my concern when I think somebody's proposing a unit with a scouting range of 20...
The claw attack animation is kind of hard to see. Could you perhaps make the red claw-swipe lines larger, and enlarge the paws a bit so they are more clear?

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